The Northern Star finance administrator Anasuya Claff with pencils made from recycled newspapers and piles of old newspapers ready to be recycled.
The Northern Star finance administrator Anasuya Claff with pencils made from recycled newspapers and piles of old newspapers ready to be recycled. David Nielsen

Business goes green

GOING green can be as simple as the pencil you use or what you do with the newspaper once you’ve read it.

A new survey, based on 187 responses across a range of industries, showed that 62 per cent of businesses have sustainability and the carbon footprint on their agenda in the next six months. The survey was commissioned on behalf of GreenBizCheck.

Office stationery and newspapers are an important issue for a company like The Northern Star in Goonellabah.

For Anasuya Claff, finance administrator at The Northern Star, it is an issue that strikes at the core of her own environmental beliefs. It is her passion for these beliefs that have driven her to make a difference in the workplace.

Among her many tasks at the newspaper office, Ms Claff recently took on the job of ordering stationery. She wants to reduce the amount of waste produced at the Media Centre.

She has managed to source pencils made from recycled newspapers from the company’s main stationery supplier, Corporate Express, and is looking into refillable pens and environmentally friendly notepads for journalists.

As for all the newspapers, The Star’s print manager at the Ballina Print Centre, Barry Dukes, said all Northern Star newspapers were made from 100 per cent recycled stock. It is a change that has happened in the last six months and with 670,000 newspapers printed this week alone it is a green initiative the company can be proud of.

At least 1500 aluminium printing plates are used each week and they are 100pc recyclable too, Mr Dukes said.

Waste paper from the Media Centre is collected by Malcolm Ritchie, from Queensland Document Destruction, sent to a mill and turned into cornflake boxes.

“I’ve set up a run through the Northern Rivers, through Ballina, Murwillumbah and Lismore, and because of the volume of paper we don’t charge for pick-up,” Mr Ritchie said.

Ms Claff has her eye on a green future and would like to see a recycling system in the office that includes a compost waste system using worms.

“There has to be a revolution in how we do business,” she said.

Northern Star general manger Paul Spotswood said it was important businesses start somewhere and even little steps like the last person turning off the lights before they leave could make a difference.

“APN Australian Publishing works to a neutral carbon footprint,” he said.

According to the survey, it is good for business; 42pc of businesses believe going green will attract and retain clients and a further 52pc have experienced cost reductions by reducing energy and water use costs the results found.

“If everyone did just three things, imagine the amount of change that would happen almost overnight,” Ms Claff said.

Ten actions to green your business

1. Switch off all lights when not in use (especially at night, weekends, holidays).
2. Turn off all IT equipment and other electrical appliances when not in use.
3. Make sure all electrical items are switched off at the power point when not in use for extended periods.
4. Disable screen savers as they often use more energy than less.
5. Make sure the heating and cooling are not set too hot or too cold.
6. Walk, ride a bike or take public transport to work.
7. Teleconference rather than make unnecessary trips.
8. Recycle everything you can.
9. Strive to operate a paperless office.
10. Install a water filter instead of purchasing bottled water.
 Sourced from www.greenbizcheck.com


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